Donna Iannone, candidate for the Pennsylvania General Assembly has been recommended by the Pennsylvania Education Association (PSEA), a community of education officials that make a difference in the lives of Pennsylvania students every day. 181,000 members strong, PSEA members include teachers, education support professionals, high education staff, nurses in health care facilities, retired educators, and college students preparing to become teachers.
PSEA strength comes not only from their members but from their belief, their values and passion.
“I’m so honored to be recommended by PSEA,” Iannone stated. “I’m passionate about education, and I’m a product of the public education system. I graduated from Wyalusing Valley High school. A Pell Grant helped me pay for college at Mansfield University, and I received my Masters at Wilkes University while working full time – before online classes were available.
Not every student needs to be prepared for college, but we need to provide them with the tools to succeed in life. Iannone believes that investing in education should be our number one priority. We shouldn’t be taking programs out of the schools. We need kids to find their passion whether it on the field, on the stage, on a canvas, in the wielding room, lab, library or kitchen.
“It’s about making sure they have the tools to succeed in life,” Iannone maintains. “This is a long-term investment that will save us in the long run. We need to break the cycle of poverty and the drug problem. I think education does that.”
Iannone is seeking changes in cyber/charter school laws. “These schools are costing local taxpayers $13,000 to $24,000 per student each year,” she contends. “Those schools say they are free on ads but they cost school districts and taxpayers and they don’t have the same standards as public schools.”
Iannone believes that cyber and charter schools need to be transparent with their funding, just like public schools. In some cases, cyber-schooling may be a better option for a child, but it should be the exception.
“We want all students to have an accredited education in a safe environment,” Iannone remarked. “Children are our future, and we need to fight for them. There are always improvements we can make in the system, and people need to be held accountable. But education in a safe environment should be our number one priority.”
Donna is currently the Chairwoman of the Sullivan County Board of Commissioners, President of the PA Women’s Caucus of County Commissioners, member of the National Association of Counties Telecommunications and Technology policy steering committee, member of the PA County Commissioners Energy and Environment committee and Natural Gas task force. She’s on numerous boards as Commissioner representatives, including the Library, Children and Youth and Drug and Alcohol. She is co–founder of the Sullivan County Backpack Program, which provides food to elementary children on the weekends. She is also a Sullivan County business owner.